1 / 7

Eveyln Mandela

Evelyn Mase: Mandela married the South African nurse in 1944. Although the couple had four children, the husband and wife grew distant, in part because of Mandela’s involvement with anti-apartheid group, the African National Congress (ANC). According to a story published in The Guardian, one day Mase returned from a trip to Durban, South Africa, and found her husband’s secretary in their Johannesburg home. Mase reportedly threatened to throw boiling water on the woman, who fled, but the affair continued. Eventually, the couple's marriage crumbled when Mase demanded that Mandela choose between her and the ANC. In 1958, she moved out and took their children with her. She died in 2004 at age 81.

Nelson Mandela and the Women He Loved

It’s a sad day. Former South African president Nelson Mandela, the anti-apartheid activist who served 27 years in prison and became South Africa’s first black president, died at his home on Thursday at age 95. However, his legacy as husband, father and grandfather lives on. Here, a look at the women he leaves behind. —By Elise Sole